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Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: UK Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 28088
Experience:  25 years experience of all aspects of family law
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before my husband and I divorced we had a deed of separation

Resolved Question:

before my husband and I divorced we had a deed of separation drawn up. One of the clauses was the provision was a full and final settlement of all actual or potential claims under the Matrimonial Causes act 1973. It has transpired over time however that my ex husband was not truthful over the amount of his pensions, secreting and hiding monies that was not known to me, through colleges of his who at the time worked in the financial service industry. although nearly 13 years have elapsed since our divorce, certain bragging and verbal slips have alerted me that all was not disclosed at the time the settlement was drawn up, have I any rights now to contest. Regards XXXXX XXXXX

Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question
I shall do my best to assist you but I need some further information first.
How much money are you referring to - and how good is the evidence that you can obtain
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

At the time my husband had an occupational pension with the AA no amount disclosed, an occupational pension with M&G with approx. value as stated by my ex of £32,000 plus Equitable Life £194.81 A.V.C This was in 1999. As for evidence its only through what my ex has hinted at as time has mellowed any animosity that his pension pot is worth over £300.000, mentioning also the Pearl insurance company and Barchester green and ethical, also that former financial workmates invested sums off money for him at the time of disclosure as a favour, so unfortunately only word of his bragging mouth, .my solicitor at the time due to the length of marriage, 25 years had indicated that I was due maintenece because of the vast differences in our earnings, I declined as I was rather naieve to think that my ex was being truthful in his disclosure. I realise this does not look good for me on the evidence front but feel angry that he deceived me this way, .he did not get the reputation of Tricky Dicky for nothing!!!

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
So you were aware of these Pension assets at the time but did not ask for evidence of them?
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I rather naievely trusted my husband to be upfront, he had always been the main breadwinner and for all of our married life had claimed the married mans allowance and I paid the married womans tax, I was never aware of what exactly his true pension status was, rather stupid of me I now realise.

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
But you were aware that there were pensions and you could have asked for details?
Did you solicitor suggest that you should?
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

No, my solicitor took at face value what information I had managed to find, needless to say info was short on the ground as most of my husbands info was locked away

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Did the solicitor not tell you that she needed to get paper evidence form your ex of his financial position?
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


No she did not mention this at all, I was the one who provided what evidence I could, at no point did she say or indicate that paper evidence was required either from me or from my husbands solicitors

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
That could be a problem.
Do you have copies of your paperwork from that time?
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi, I kept all relevant paper work from my solicitor relating to my separation which amounts to 2 letters, the first one outlines our first meeting and spells out monies etc, the second is the actual separation agreement itself. The only mention in the first letter following the initial meeting goes like this, "As I explained to you, provided that both you and your husband have the benefit of independent legal advise, there is full financial disclosure on both sides, and there is no question of either party putting the other under duress, you should both approach this separation agreement as a binding agreement between you"" Save from the snippets of info that I managed to find myself I believe that my solicitor did not approach my exes solicitor and demand full financial disclosure, thus enabling my ex husband to withhold vital info, No doubt that over time my ex has covered his tracks however surely my solicitor at the time should have insisted on such disclosure. I only wish to know that I may have a claim against the solicitor /firm due to the fact that by omitting to obtain this information that I was financially out of pocket. I was married to my husband over 25 years and only worked part time , whilst raising our children, I never put into a pension as my husband used to say that he was making provisions for the both of us. This surely should have played a important role in the separation. Regards Denise

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
HI
What happened in the subsequent Divorce Proceedings?
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Hi, Nothing, it was a legal separation and approx. 3 years later I applied to the courts for a divorce and did not need to go through my solicitor as all assets had been sorted, Regards Denise

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi, nothing, as we had already sorted out our finances with a legal separation agreement, all I had to do was apply to the courts for a divorce three years later and had no need to use a solicitor again. regards xxxxxxxx

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
So there was no final financial order within the divorce proceedings?
Have you remarried at all?
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Hi, No there was no financial order within the divorce proceedings, I remarried eight and a half years ago, All monies from my second husband goes to his only daughter and his two grandchildren, I have a lifelong right to live in his house until my death ,the house is willed to his daughter, Regardsxxxxxxxxx

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Unfortunately the fact that you have remarried removes any chance of your making any further financial claim against your ex which is a disappointment as I am afraid that there is little chance of your pursuing a negligence claim at this late date although from what you have said you were indeed clearly badly advised - although at that time your claim on his pensions would have been difficult to deal with as Pension Sharing was not available at that time
I am sorry not to give you more positive news but please ask if you need further details
Claire
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Dear Claire, Thank you so much for your advise and although the outcome is not what I would have liked I can now put this matter to rest, although it makes me cross that legal advise that was not cheap and ill advised still makes me rather cross! Regards xxxxxxxxxx

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
I can understand your anger - after all you paid for someone to help you not let you do all the work.
Claire
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: UK Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 28088
Experience: 25 years experience of all aspects of family law
Clare and other UK Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

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